María Mercedes Vázquez Vázquez

Lecturer & Honorary Assistant Professor

  • PhD (Film Studies, Comparative Literature, HKU)
  • MA (Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language, UCM)
  • BA & MA (Hispanic Philology, UCM)

Contact details:

Room 5.01, 5/F, Run Run Shaw Tower
Centennial Campus,
The University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam Road


Dr. Vázquez Vázquez holds degrees from Universidad Complutense de Madrid in Hispanic Philology (BA, MA) and Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language (MA), and from HKU in Film Studies (PhD). She presents papers on Film and Latin American Studies at international conferences regularly, and her publications include book chapters and articles on Venezuelan, Brazilian, and Mexican cinemas, and an annotated bibliography on Latin American cinema (OUP), among others. She has led several curriculum innovation initiatives at HKU and her courses range from general Spanish language courses to Spanish for Professional Purposes, Hispanic Cultures, Literature, and European Cinema. She is also the Coordinator of the Year-2 Spanish Language courses, two of the three capstone (upper-division) courses and a field-trip course. In addition to her position as Lecturer of the degree programme, she is the Academic Advisor of the Secondary-School and Non-degree programmes for Spanish. Since she started teaching at HKU two decades ago, she has organized numerous film screenings and seminars to promote Spanish-language cultures in Hong Kong in liaison with governmental and film institutions, and she is a founding member of the Committee on Gender Equality and Diversity of the Faculty of Arts, and of its Research Subcommittee.

Teaching responsibilities:

  • Hispanic Visual and Literary Cultures (SPAN3023)
  • Field Trip to a Spanish-speaking Country (SPAN2031)
  • Introduction to the Cultures and History of Latin America (SPAN2029)
  • Internship for Students of Spanish (SPAN4005)
  • Hispanic Research Project (SPAN4004)
  • From Cinema to Society: Understanding Europe through Film (EUST2015)
  • Spanish for Business and Intercultural Communication (SPAN3028)
  • General language Courses: Spanish II.1 (SPAN2001), Spanish II.2 (SPAN2002)

Selected publications:


  • “The Owners of the Land: Culture and the Spectre of Mining in the Andes”. Yearbook for Traditional Music 51 (with Adriana Martínez Falcón).
  • The Question of Class in Contemporary Latin American Cinema. Lexington, 2018.
  • “New Geographies of Class in Mexican and Brazilian Cinemas: Post Tenebras Lux and Que horas ela volta?” In Contemporary Latin American Cinema. Resisting Neoliberalism?, edited by Claudia Sandberg and Carolina Rocha. Palgrave Macmillan, 2018.
  • “Precariousness in Contemporary Venezuelan Filmmaking: Pelo malo and Brecha en el silencio.” In The Precarious in the Cinemas of the Americas, edited by Constanza Burucúa and Carolina Sitnisky. Palgrave Macmillan, 2018.
  • “Latin American Cinema.” In Oxford Bibliographies in Cinema and Media Studies, edited by Krin Gabbard. New York: Oxford University Press, 2017.
  • “El aprendizaje de Don Quijote en un entorno educativo ELE.” Tinta China 12.
  • “Brazil at a Socio-cinematic Crossroads. State Intervention On Screen.” In Brazil in Twenty-First Century Popular Media. Culture, Politics, and Nationalism on the World Stage, edited by Naomi Pueo Wood, Naomi, Lexington, 2014.
  • Sánchez, Alberto, José Miguel Blanco, Nicolás Arriaga, L. Chen, Pablo Deza, and Mercedes Vázquez. “Contextos de enseñanza y aprendizaje de ELE en el ámbito sinohablante.” Monográficos SINOELE 4.
  • “Secuestro Express and La clase: Politics of Realism in Contemporary Venezuelan Filmmaking.” Jump Cut 52.
  • “Teaching Film or Using Film to Learn Language and Culture? Diverse Approaches to Teaching Film in Foreign Language Centres.” Lenguas Modernas, 34.
  • “El creciente interés por el español en Hong Kong” in El Español en el Mundo. Anuario del Instituto Cervantes (Yearbook of the Cervantes Institute), 2004.

Selected Conference Papers, Seminars, Workshops and Interviews:

  • Interview about the Future of Spanish in Asia in the Magazine Tinta China, published by the Office of the Spanish Ministry of Education in Beijing.
  • Plenary Speaker. Conference “Encuentro Latinoamericano de Español para Fines Específicos: Perspectivas, Prácticas y Retos en ELE”. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Valparaíso and Universidad Federal de Paraíba. December 2020.
  • Webinar on Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language in Hong Kong and China (with Dr. Xu Lei), July 2020.
  • Webinar on Conducting Research during COVID (with Prof. P. Zimmermann, Dr. R. Sinha and Prof. G. Marchetti), June 2020.
  • Talk on the Faculty of Arts’ research strengths on gender and sexuality at the forum “Taking Gender Studies Research Seriously in Higher Education,” HKU, 8 March 2017.
  • Paper “Reconciling Re-emancipation and Industrial Success in Venezuelan Cinema.” LASA Congress.
  • Seminar “The Cinematic Return of “El Pueblo.” Comparative Literature, HKU 2016.
  • Seminar “Latin American Writers Reading the World: Alejo Carpentier and Octavio Paz.” Hong Kong Book Fair 2015.
  • Seminar “From Novel to Film: Works by Nobel Prize Laurate Mario Vargas Llosa.” Hong Kong Book Fair 2014.
  • Paper “Opciones de construcción cinematográfica del pasado para iluminar el presente,” LASA Congress.
  • Paper “Neither simpletons nor gangsters. Mutual cultural (miss)understandings on Latin American and Chinese screens.” LASA Congress.
  • Paper “Historias digitales en español”. Congreso Mundial de Profesores de Español. COMPROFES. Instituto Cervantes, Madrid.
  • Paper “Reflecting “Geographies of Injustice”: Heterotopias and Class Differences in Latin American Cinema.” ACS CROSSROADS.
  • Research seminar “Politics of realism in contemporary Venezuelan filmmaking.” Research Seminar Series of the SMLC, HKU.
  • Workshop for teachers titled “Cinema in Spanish as a Foreign Language Classroom (ELE). Review of teaching and learning approaches”. Series of workshops for teachers of Spanish in Asia held at the Spanish Education Office in Beijing.

Committee and Cultural Projects:

  • Active participation in the Asia and the Americas Section of LASA.
  • Film Series: “Crossing Borders: The many faces of the struggle for a better life in the Iberian American world”, a Spanish-Portuguese-American Studies project.
  • Research Seminar Series of the Committee on Gender Equality and Diversity of the Faculty of Arts
  • “Argentine movie days” (November 2016-2017)
  • Panorama of Contemporary Cinema from Latin America and Spain: Film Series at HKU in collaboration with PRAGDA Spanish Film Club (March-April 2016)
  • First Venezuelan Film Series in Hong Kong in collaboration with the Consulate General of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in Hong Kong and the Arts Centre (March 2010)
  • Visits of contemporary Spanish writers to HKU (José Carlos Somoza, Javier Puebla and Espido Freire (2006-08)